Unsurprisingly, it’s essentially a jacked-up version of the new Legacy.
We already knew it was coming thanks to recent teasers, and now the covers have come off the all-new 2020 Subaru Outback crossover, which has just debuted at the 2019 New York Auto Show with a more powerful turbo engine, a new, more rigid platform, and advanced interior tech. Essentially, it’s a jacked-up version of the all-new Legacy that debuted earlier this year, with a more rugged appearance thanks to its unique bumpers and body cladding for off-road adventuring.
Like the new Legacy, the sixth-generation Subaru Outback rides on the new Subaru Global Platform. Compared to the previous Outback’s platform, the structure is 70% stiffer in both torsional and front-suspension rigidity, and 100% stiffer in both front lateral flexural and rear subframe rigidity. It also offers better crash protection, as the new body absorbs over 40% more energy in front and side crashes than the current model. The new Outback also has 8.7 inches of ground clearance, which is greater than many other rival models in the segment.
For the first time since 2009, the Outback now offers a turbocharged engine. As standard, XT models pack the same 2.4-liter turbocharged Boxer engine as the new Legacy delivering 260 horsepower at 5,600 rpm and 277 lb-ft of torque at 2,000 rpm. The base model, on the other hand, gets a naturally aspirated 2.5-liter Boxer producing 182 horsepower at 5,800 rpm and 176 lb-ft of torque at 4,400 rpm.
All 2020 Outback models are paired with a Lineartronic CVT featuring an 8-speed manual mode function with steering wheel paddle shifters. The 2.4-liter turbo also delivers an impressive 3,500-lb towing capacity, the most of any Outback in history, while the 2.5-liter provides more than a 600-mile range on a single tank. Fuel economy is estimated 26/33 mpg city/highway for the 2.5-liter and 23/30 mpg city/highway for the turbo. Complementing the refined powertrains is an all-new suspension that is lighter and more responsive.
Inside, the cabin is made out of better-quality materials and features a large 11.6-inch infotainment display with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and over-the-air updates. Limited and Touring models feature 10-way power front seats with lumbar support, adjustable cushion length (driver only) and heated front/rear seats. Touring models also get ventilated front seats and a heated steering wheel as standard. With a cargo floor length of 78 inches with the rear seatbacks folded, the 2020 Outback offers up to 75.7 cu. ft. of cargo space.
Subaru’s EyeSight Driver Assist system with Lane Centering Function is offered as standard, while optional safety systems include DriverFocus Distraction Mitigation system, Front View Monitor, LED Steering Responsive headlights, and Reverse Automatic Braking.
The 2020 Subaru Outback will arrive in US dealers this fall in Base, Premium, Limited, Touring, Onyx Edition XT, Limited XT and Touring XT trims. The Onyx Edition XT features black detailing on the exterior, 18-inch alloys, special badging, and an exclusive gray two-tone interior. Pricing will be announced closer to the sale date. Expect it to cost slightly more than the current Outback, which starts at $25,895.